The Priceless Love of a Father
In putting the finishing touches on my sermon for tomorrow I became stuck in thought and emotion. I could not move forward without expressing the tremendous love I have for my father. I cannot say enough good and great words about my father, John Jeffrey. My father introduced me to my Heavenly/Spiritual Father (God), the supreme gift of all. The love and companionship of my father has been a true and lifesaving blessing in my life. The spirituality of my father is unreal. Despite it being a day early, I cannot help but say Happy Father’s day to the man – who through Christ – taught me how to be a Christian man, husband, father, and leader. His example has been exceptional. In all of my faults and flaws, I could never say I saw them in my father. Drugs, alcohol, and profanity have never been part of his life. He has always been and remains a man of prayer, respect, faith, generosity, mercy, and example. Paul said, “Follow me as I also follow Christ.” My father is the type of man that if you follow his example, it will lead you to Christ. His essence is about following the deep principles of Christ, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The love my father displays toward my mother, continually reminds me of the love I must have for my wife and children. Father’s generally go without reward and appreciation, but my father has been on-point from day one. It must be announced! If I can be half the father to my children that my father is to me, I will be a success.
When I am in a valley, pit, or dark moment of life, I request the prayers and supplication of my father. It brings solution and resolve every time. Clearly the devil attacks men in a Mighty, Mighty way because he knows the power and impact a father can have on his children. If I did not have the presence of my father I would be dead, on drugs, or in jail. I know the price of a father. Even while I was on a path of destruction, my father was the consistent, powerful, wise, and loving patriarch of sublime guidance. What is even deeper is that, in my adulthood, my father has respect for me as a son, Christian, husband, father, leader, and man. I cannot even explain the level of reciprocity and support that exists in our father/son relationship. Too often parental relationships are about power and a stay-in-your-place program/agenda. True fathers detect and cultivate the essence of their children and it ultimately results in reciprocal dialogue.
When it came to sports my father was at my games, but he first taught me how to play. He played me tough. I would complain about him fouling too hard or pitching too fast. He would simply say, “Stop crying.” Thus when I got on the court or baseball diamond with other children and teenagers, it was an ease. I played against a man almost daily – so playing against boys was nothing. My father would come home from work and we would go right across the street to the Golden Gate Elementary school yard (Fillmoe), and play a serious game of strikeout or go one-on-one on the court. He would bring home rubber balls from Woolworths on Market Street (old skool), that were perfect for strikeout, but hurt like crazy if hit by a pitch (stop crying… lol). Then we would go in the house and play head-to-head football in the dark (Remember that electronic game). I love my father for raising me in Fillmoe. My San Francisco neighborhood put a cultured style within me that will be unique to Fillmoe no matter where I am in the world.
To the man that blessed, cultivated, loved, and saved my life, Happy Father’s Day. Daddy, I love you more than words can express. There is so much more to say. Maybe I need to write the book on your life in regards to a Father’s Love and Faith.